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Old 02-01-2011, 02:27 PM   #1
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Default Making the Switch: Gravel to Sand?

I prefer the look of sand over gravel, so how should I go about making this change?
I know a lot of beneficial bacteria grows in the gravel, so how can I change to sand without having to re-cycle my tank?
And is it common for sand to get sucked up into the filter?
How would I prevent this?
Thanks guys!
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Old 02-01-2011, 02:32 PM   #2
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if i was you i wouldnt go through that efford just for looks.

gravels nice and i know sands better but just stick with the gravel
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Old 02-01-2011, 02:36 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by cossie View Post
if i was you i wouldnt go through that efford just for looks.

gravels nice and i know sands better but just stick with the gravel
I beg to differ. Sand just looks too pretty! And I always like switching my aquariums' decor up every month or so.
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Old 02-01-2011, 03:27 PM   #4
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when i did the switch, I switched new tanks and all and moved all of the water to the new tank and just dumped the sand in. Make sure you rinse out first or it'll be all bubbly and gross but other than that, I didn't do anything really. And I've got some pretty sensitive fish that survived disease free and all.
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Old 02-01-2011, 04:56 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by snyderguy View Post
when i did the switch, I switched new tanks and all and moved all of the water to the new tank and just dumped the sand in. Make sure you rinse out first or it'll be all bubbly and gross but other than that, I didn't do anything really. And I've got some pretty sensitive fish that survived disease free and all.
Oh, okay! Thanks for the advice, Syder[;
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Old 02-01-2011, 08:45 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by snyderguy View Post
when i did the switch, I switched new tanks and all and moved all of the water to the new tank and just dumped the sand in. Make sure you rinse out first or it'll be all bubbly and gross but other than that, I didn't do anything really. And I've got some pretty sensitive fish that survived disease free and all.
I have a question...how in the heck do you rinse sand without losing it lol...

I have issues rinsing gravel and I just rinsed 150 pounds of it for my 125 and lost probably 5 lbs.
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Old 02-02-2011, 01:33 AM   #7
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What I did was just put the sand in a bucket and fill the bucket up with water. Then all the foam comes off and you just get rid of the water and repeat
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:23 AM   #8
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Be very careful with what sand you buy. Some sand, for example "crushed coral" can seriously mess with your pH (it's a natural pH buffer).
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:47 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by grfury View Post
Be very careful with what sand you buy. Some sand, for example "crushed coral" can seriously mess with your pH (it's a natural pH buffer).
Thank you, I'll keep an eye out for that. Any suggestions on what brand I should get? I like the look of the really white sand.
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Old 02-02-2011, 10:19 AM   #10
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This is my danio tank. The substrate is a mix of bulk substrates from my local fish shop. 2 parts 1-2mm gravel, 1 part 4-6mm gravel, and then 12 parts of "superfine" non argonite sand, this is very important. Argonite sand is for reef/salt water, will put your pH through the roof.
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Old 02-02-2011, 10:37 AM   #11
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You have to let the sand sit in buckets of water for a few weeks before you put in your tank, and like grfury said dont get argonite or reef sand, look for the regular sand, and for the sake of your fish don't buy home improvement sand (play sand), it screws up your water so fast. As for the filter and beneficial bacteria, install a regular power filter but (make sure the intake tube isn't close to the bottom) as you have a small tank, and invest in buying a sponge filter for your bacteria to grow in, you could also put in some lava rock deco that way the bacteria will grow all over it, also not many people know this but the beneficial bacteria grow on every surface of your tank, deco, plants, glass, etc will all have some bacteria. I hope that helps, there is a brand of sand I use I forget the name, it comes in many different colors, and none of the chain petstore sells them, I got mine from a little shack that breeds koi about 30miles from my house, they have every color from white to pink
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Old 02-02-2011, 10:40 AM   #12
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the brand is aqua terra, I just found the bag lol, i used some blue and green sand for my betta bowl, you can mix and match colors, it comes in 5lbs bags, so If you're using a 10g use two bags, it might cost you $10 for both depending on where u go
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Old 02-02-2011, 10:49 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by e048 View Post
the brand is aqua terra, I just found the bag lol, i used some blue and green sand for my betta bowl, you can mix and match colors, it comes in 5lbs bags, so If you're using a 10g use two bags, it might cost you $10 for both depending on where u go
Thank you so much! Most helpful post, by far.

So while my tank is cycling, I should rinse the sand multiple times, and then just let it sit in a large bucket with water for like two weeks and then add it to tank, wait for it to settle, and I'm good to go? Also, is it okay if my heater touches the sand? It's a little long for my tank..
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10 Gallon-- Gup Tank
Two Males, Two Females, Fifteen Fry

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Old 02-02-2011, 07:51 PM   #14
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You should get black sand! I have dreamsed of gettnig blak sand in one of my aquariums. I can't seem to remember the brand might be like Tahitian Black sand but I can't remember.

Hope the switch goes ok! I have never endulged myself in sand as a substrate since I feel it's easier to grow plants in gravel though cleaning sand is easier...
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Old 02-02-2011, 08:26 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by KevinP View Post
You should get black sand! I have dreamsed of gettnig blak sand in one of my aquariums. I can't seem to remember the brand might be like Tahitian Black sand but I can't remember.

Hope the switch goes ok! I have never endulged myself in sand as a substrate since I feel it's easier to grow plants in gravel though cleaning sand is easier...
http://cgi.ebay.com/Aqua-Terra-Premi...item8262ccda24

Aqua Terra comes in black[;
I prefer the white though.

I have zero experience with aquatic plants so sand will be alright for me[; I might add a java fern or java moss here and there.. Hopefully the sand will be alright for them!
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